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04.09.2015: Denmark nominates Mrs. Helle Thorning-Schmidt to the position as new UN High Commissioner for Refugees

The Danish Government has decided to nominate former PM Mrs. Helle Thorning-Schmidt as Denmark’s official candidate to the position as new UN High Commissioner for Refugees. The position will be available when the mandate of the current High Commissioner Antonio Guterres, former PM of Portugal, expires at the end of 2015.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Kristian Jensen states:

“With the huge global challenges created by the heavy migration and large refugee flows, there is more than ever a need for a strong UNHCR lead by an experienced person that can find solutions. Mr. Antonio Guterres has done an excellent job in the past ten years. It is important that his successor is able to pick up where he left and contribute to unifying the global community around solutions and support to the refugees – and to the regional countries which carry a great burden. The world needs a strong UNHCR led by a strong High Commissioner. Denmark is able to present such a candidate in former PM Mrs. Helle Thorning-Schmidt and the government is very pleased that Helle Thorning-Schmidt has agreed to be Denmark’s official candidate. With the current crises and a humanitarian summit in Istanbul, Turkey, next year there is plenty of work ahead”.     

Background
The UN Secretary General has announced that the position as UN High Commissioner for Refugees will be filled during the autumn. The new High Commissioner is expected to take up office on January 1st 2016. The current High Commissioner, Antonio Guterres, was appointed in the spring of 2005. The High Commissioner for refugees is formally appointed by the UN General Assembly after being nominated by the UN Secretary General.